Our ear training lessons were established for the purpose of strengthening your relationship with salsa music. We do this by first removing any reliance on beat-counting; through helping you recognise specific accents of the various rhythm layers and correlating them with existing movements. This frees you to dance directly into the music, without interference from ungainly abstractions.
From there we go on to using, feeling and dancing polyrhythms, then to developing timing independence and articulating melodic phrasing. Ultimately these lessons will overlap with the seminars on Afro-Cuban music, where you will come to understand the culturally unique artefacts that are embedded in the musics of the different salsa-producing centres. Below is a broad list of topics in developmental sequence:
of the conga and the tumbao moderno
clave as a master rhythm
and guajeos: upbeat rhythms with downbeat accents
and the pulse
as the heartbeat of a song
Why the different
salsa timings feel the way they do
clave: what a difference a beat makes
We recommend that lessons be arranged when the target audience is familiar with the preceding topics. Classes are highly participatory, where active listening is complemented by an appropriate use of dance vocabulary to illustrate and contextualise each point. The more advanced topics require a greater level of movement proficiency by the student.
©1999 Salsa & Merengue Society